A Guide To Estate Planning

For individuals that honorably spend a great deal of their lives building and maintaining a legacy for their families, it can be terribly frightening to discover that most of it can be taken away due to improper estate planning. Recently, politicians have been bantering back and forth regarding the “repeal” of the estate tax, if we let history be our guide we know that when the government “gives” a tax break they tend to take it back in one form or another. Improper estate planning will leave your assets at substantial risk due to death taxes, on both the state and federal level. In addition to probate and administration costs the burden on your family can be daunting.

Consider these two examples:

  • Conrad Hilton, Owner of Hilton Hotel Chain

    Mr. Hilton’s estate was valued at almost $200 million. Estate settlement costs were over $105 million, most of which were federal estate taxes, payable in cash. His heirs received only 47% of his fortune. Although that was still a substantial amount, imagine writing a check to Uncle Sam for $100 million!

  • Jessica Savitch, NBC News Anchorwoman

    Ms. Savitch left a $2,175,493 estate. After paying settlement costs (over a third of which were federal estate taxes) her heirs ended up with less than half of her estate. With proper planning, this devastation of her estate could have been prevented.

Though you may not have accumulated Conrad Hilton’s vast wealth or even Jessica Savitch’s more modest fortune, your estate could still be examined by the IRS

Could you write a check for 50% of the value of everything you own?

A Markowski Investments Estate Plan will assist in determining the overall settlement costs which will reduce your estate, and give you options in developing a strategy to ensure your family’s wealth and your legacy.

Your estate is made up of…

  • Real Estate
  • Business Interest
  • Personal Property (including furniture, art, collections etc.)
  • Life Insurance

Your expenses…

  • Federal Estate Taxes
  • State Death Taxes
  • Medical, Funeral
  • Debts
  • Attorney’s Fees
  • Executor’s Fees
  • Probate Costs